Shared from the 5/28/2017 Palm Beach Post eEdition

Art exhibit encourages kids to think

Summer exhibit goes on display June 8 at Lighthouse ArtCenter.


E.B. Lewis’ illustration shows Supreme Court justices towering over a young African-American girl. The girl represents one of the plaintiffs in the 1954 Brown vs. The Board of Education.


“Dinosaur” by Mark Teague is part of next month’s “Drawn To The Arts” exhibit in Tequesta’s Lighthouse ArtCenter.



An illustration from the Froggy series by Frank Remkiewicz


What: Drawn To The Arts exhibit Where: Lighthouse ArtCenter, 373 Tequesta Drive, Tequesta When: June 8-Aug. 11 Hours: Monday-Friday 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Cost: No charge for members and children under 12; nonmembers $5; first Saturday of the month is free. Information: Go to or call 561-746-3101


• The Lighthouse ArtCenter Gallery & School of Art was started in 1964 by eight artists and Christopher Norton, the son of the founders of the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach. About 60,000 people annually visit the nonprofit center.

• About 1,300 artists are involved and about 2,500 students of all ages are enrolled in classes for ceramics, drawing, painting, sculpture, jewelry design, photography and other media. More than 350 young artists, ages 4 to 15, attend summer art camps at the center.

• The artists who have contributed the work to be on next month’s display have won awards such as the Caldecott Award, the Newbery Award, the Pura Belpre Award, the Coretta Scott King Award, the Bank Street Book of the Year Award and the U.S. Maritime Literature Award.

Ask someone about the art that appeals to kids, and they’ll likely describe rainbows, animals and cartoons.

A different display is planned at next month’s “Drawn To The Arts” exhibit in Tequesta’s Lighthouse ArtCenter. Provoking thinking and sparking feeling is the goal, say some of the artists, who are children’s book authors and illustrators.

E.B. Lewis’s illustration shows nine black-robed Supreme Court justices towering over a young African-American girl wearing a bright red dress. The girl represents one of the plaintiffs in the 1954 Brown vs. The Board of Education U.S. Supreme Court decision that declared legal school segregation unconstitutional.

“I chose red because it’s powerful. It shows the girl making a giant first step,” said Lewis, an illustrator from Philadelphia.

That’s not to say there won’t be nature scenes, sea life and fantasy characters. Frank Remkiewicz, who lives in Sarasota, will be showing illustrations from his series of Froggy books.

Like seasoning on food, the artwork enhances the text, said Remkiewicz, who lives in Sarasota.

“The bright colors and simple drawings bring out the meaning. Children don’t want a simple cartoon. They want realism. A good illustration makes the hairs on the backs of their neck go up,” Remkiewicz said.

The summer exhibit starting June 8 features the original work of Lewis, Remkiewicz and a dozen other national award-winning children’s picture book authors and illustrators.

“Indians and robots, monsters and bunnies, graphic novels, nature, heroes, history and humor, the gallery will be brimming with artwork that we know from the books that we all love,” said Janeen Mason, the center’s curator. “We water the seeds of imagination in every blooming brain that waltzes, skips, or rolls through our doors during this world class exhibition right here in the village of Tequesta.”

The paintings — mounted lower than usual because the audience is children — will be displayed along with their illustration books. Volunteers will read. Pillows will be on the floor for the children to sit and listen.

Other illustrations include Japanese airplanes attacking Pearl Harbor, encounters during the American civil rights movement, wild horses on Sable Island off the coast of Nova Scotia and even a painting of a father with his sleeping daughter in his lap as the night sky sparkles with stars.

“Illustrative art takes the person to that place. It is often the first time a child experiences art. It can set up a lifetime of learning,” Mason said.

Finding the balance between bringing realism to children and entertaining them can be difficult. Often, it’s the background of the child, not the illustration, that determines how the child views the work, Lewis said.

“A teenager from Chicago and a teenager from Boston are going to look at that (Board of Education illustration) in different ways. You get from art what you bring to it,” Lewis said. Twitter: @Billdipaolo

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